My apologies for this lengthy and intense post but today I am struggling. This is something that is very hard for me to write, hell it is hard enough for me to say it, let alone write it. In print, for all to see and forever look back on. I am the strong one, the one people can lean on when they need to talk, vent or cry. That is my thing, forever a part of who I am and part of what drives me. Lately, not so much. I feel as though I have come a little undone.
I have gone back and forth about writing about the details of my ordeal that happened a couple months ago, even if just to get it off my chest and hopefully start to lay it to rest. I just haven’t figured out where and how to begin. You see, I am not an eloquent writer and have no witty and entertaining way to write about what happened to me, to us. So, I guess I shall just share it, as I did with my friends. Break the silence so to speak as today, May 5, is officially I AM STILL STANDING DAY after losing a child or infertility.
Both of my pregnancies resulted in emergency C-sections due to pre-eclampsia. So, Chris and I took some time to decide to have another, an entire year to be precise. We both love kids and would likely have had many more if it wasn’t for my darn body and pregnancy issues. We had pretty much decided we were having another but hadn’t officially pulled the trigger yet (tee, hee). We were on our way to our annual snowboarding trip to Vermont (for our anniversary) and I received a text from one of my best friends that was a little suspect. After a little prodding I managed to get it out of her that she was pregnant. I was SO excited for her! We had talked about how amazing it would be to be pregnant together. That was the green light for me. I knew we were getting pregnant that weekend. So much so, that I bought an antique letter press #6 while we were there at my favourite antique store. Chris and I, our three girls plus baby = 6. It would go in the nursery. I remember thinking while buying it that maybe we would have a boy and Chris will finally have more testosterone in the house and someone to complain to about how much toilet paper we go through every week, haha.
I was right. Fast forward to 8 weeks later, I am crawling around on the floor in horrible pain. Chris insists we go to the hospital as I am pregnant and he says “you just never know”. Not wanting to put anyone out or traumatize the sleeping kids, I tried to change his mind. Didn’t work, thankfully, as I found out later had I stayed at home, I likely would have died. Can you imagine hearing that come out of a doctor’s mouth? I found out that night that I potentially had an ectopic pregnancy. I am not going to bore you with all of the details but doctors and specialists went back and forth all night as to what the next course of action would be while I lay there in disbelief and wanted them to be damn sure that was what was going on before they did anything that might harm the baby. The morning ended with two doctors, a nurse and Chris running to the OR with me on a bed, writhing in pain watching the lights and ceiling tiles quickly streaming past. I felt like I was in a movie and it wasn’t really happening to me. I had a ruptured ectopic pregnancy which resulted in a blood transfusion, my fallopian tube and a bit of my uterus being removed. Our baby was gone and so were the hopes of another.
I read once while trying to find others that have gone through the same thing as me that “grief has a way of getting all up in your business” especially when you least expect it. I wish I remembered where I read it so I could give her credit and return to read more of her wise words. I just remember reading it and thinking how true that was. At that moment and now. Just when I thought I was doing fine and making strides with moving past it, today, grief has gotten all up my business. The loss of what was and could have been. People keep saying, you have three beautiful healthy girls you should be happy. I agree, I am totally grateful and always will be, but at the same time, I realize what I am missing out on. What WE are missing out on. It is tough. Most days are good and I realize how precious life is and am grateful for the reminder of what is truly important in life. Today it is tough. I fear this has opened a part of me that I can’t ever close. A me that will occasionally burst into tears at seeing a women who is as pregnant as I would be right now, a me that is so emotional and can cry at the drop of a hat, a me that has been a little impatient, when patience has always been one of my qualities I have been most proud of.
The rational side of me knows better. I just need to get over the trauma of it all. As I am grateful for my girls, I am also grateful to Chris and my friends for being so supportive even though they might not get what all the fuss is about. I am also grateful for my art as it truly does help heal.